Wednesday, August 7, 2013

The hard times make us stronger!

First off...the weather here the past two days has felt like Sunny Ol' California!  A Brother Purves, a member in my ward, said that it's too bad it's been this nice because I won't get the wonderful opportunity to build  character!  haha That made me laugh, and it's true. The hard times (trials) make us stronger and help us grow.  That's what life is all about!  Yesterday during fast and Testimony meeting, the Bishop said that he is grateful for every opportunity Heavenly Father gives him to exercise his faith. I sat there thinking about that , and realized that when we are going through trials we are exercising our faith! We are exercising our faith when we change and become better than we were yesterday! We are exercising our faith as we make the right choices! I am so grateful for this mission--a time that I have to exercise my faith and in turn grow closer to Heavenly Father and feel of the joy that this gospel brings!!!
So some really cool things happened this week...
It was announced that our entire mission is going to a Washington Nationals game on September 13th! (Emily--that's your birthday!!!)  We were all shocked, but it's true.  That is also the day that the week of service starts in Virginia.  So, fun times ahead!
We were also challenged by our mission president to do a 40 day fast.  This is exactly what I need!!!  It was seriously an answer to my prayers! The whole 40 day fast is explained in the talk "Thy Confidence Shall Wax Strong in the Presence of God" by Robert E Quinn.  I am so excited to go to work and become what the Lord wants me to become!
We got to see Bethany right before she left on her mission, who is coming to the San Fernando mission!!!  Look out for a Hermana Hartt!! She is going to be an awesome missionary, you are all so lucky!
We were able to hand out two Book of Mormons last night in 15 minutes! It's never really happened like that ever before.  Where we were was not on our agenda, but I know that Heavenly Father put us in these people's paths!
We went over to a member's house last night and taught their family the Plan of Salvation.  They have an aunt that isn't a member, and she was there.  She was the cutest ever! At the end of the lesson she said, "That was very interesting!" She then said that Sister Hansen and I were meant to be together! She made my day yesterday!!!!
Another really cool experience that I had during Sacrament meeting: We had a sister that was talking about temples and family history work and how that brings us closer to our ancestors that have passed on.  I was thinking about all of my faithful and stalwart ancestors, and I just felt the love and support that my ancestors on the other side of the veil are giving me! I know that they are watching out for me!! I have angels helping me along in my work--it's promised in the scriptures! Just think about it, they are missionaries over there too and know what I need.  I know that without a doubt, they are praying for me as well! I started crying when I thought about all the love and support/tender mercies that Heavenly Father is giving me to further along His work and His will. 
This week I am so amazed at how Heavenly Father has such a hand in our lives! He knows us, and is willing to help us, all we need to do is ask!  I know that this Church is true!  I know that Heavenly Father answers our prayers and will help us overcome any challenge we have!!! I am always praying for everyone back home!! I love you all so much!
Sister Rachel Udall
Sister Hansen, Bethany Hartt (soon to be Hermana Hartt), Sister Udall

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